Phoenix, AZ — Rape in the United States is defined by the Department of Justice as "Penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim." At the end of the following story about what happened to Erica Reynolds, you will have zero doubt that she was raped. However, because her rapists wear a badge and claim to protect society, no one will be going to jail and the rapists claim everything they did was legal.
Erica's nightmare started the day after Christmas in 2018 when police suspected her of having a substance deemed illegal by the state. Because the state claims the immoral authority to kidnap, cage — and, in Erica's case, rape — people in search of these substances, this innocent mother was kidnapped and brought down to the Phoenix police department.
As police searched for the arbitrary substance, Erica was stripped naked, forced into a concrete room — and raped.
She recalled, in horrifying detail, to the Arizona Republic, about how the rape unfolded. Erica was in the room with a male officer and a female officer. When she noticed the female officer begin to put on rubber gloves, Erica went into panic mode and began begging the officers not to do what they were about to do. They did not listen, even when she demanded they stop.
“I said, ‘You can’t do this to me,’” she says. “He said, ‘We can. And we will.’”
Without putting any lubrication on the glove, Erica was forced to bend over as the female cop rammed her dry fingers into Erica's anus. Having given birth just a few months earlier, Erica was suffering from hemorrhoids which were prodded and torn during the search for non-existent drugs. Erica screamed out in agony, but the callous state-sanctioned rapists couldn't have cared less.
After anally raping the innocent mother, the female cop — without changing gloves — proceeded to vaginally rape Erica. After finding nothing again, Erica was sent on her way. She went home vomiting and was in so much pain that she had to go to the hospital to be treated. Her injuries were so bad that hospital staff called police to report a sexual assault.
Clearly understanding that what she just experienced was an act of rape, Erica filed a complaint. But no one would even listen to her, much less be held accountable because, as mentioned above, it's not called rape when cops are searching for substances deemed illegal by the state — it's called policy, even when they violate it.
As the Arizona Republic reports, under Phoenix Police Department policy, body cavity searches require a warrant or the "consent of the suspect" to prevent unconstitutional searches. The policy also mandates that only a medical doctor may perform them, and any strip search must take place in "private rooms with due regard for the subject's dignity."
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None of this happened in Erica's case. Erica says that the department circled the wagons and covered it up. Even after hospital staff reported the sexual assault injuries, police still had the nerve to call what they did to Erica a "routine cavity search."
Now, top brass within the Phoenix police department are simply chocking up Erica's treatment as a lapse in policy that allows officers to "hide” their use of "out of policy" tactics that injure people.
Sgt. Mercedes Fortune, a Phoenix police spokeswoman, said, “In Mrs. Reynolds' case, are there moments when things happened and it’s not captured and it wasn’t recorded? There were. If you are that type of cop, that probably won’t be the first time you do something wrong, so we hope the second time we catch you.”
Neither of the cops involved in Erica's case were fired, even after they were found to have violated department policy, so the idea of catching them a second time is absurd as they were allowed to knowingly get away with it the first time. Last year, the female cop received just one week of suspension as punishment, not for raping the woman, but for violating policy when she did it.
Earlier this year, because the officers involved were not held accountable in any meaningful way, the taxpayers shelled out $1.6 million to Erica.
Sadly, Erica's case is one of countless other cases on which TFTP has reported over the years. Even innocent great-grandmothers aren't safe from the badge wearing rapists in their immoral pursuit of illegal substances. And all of it is allowed to continue and condoned by most of society because they have been taught from childhood that the state can do no harm, and locking people in cages and raping them over substances — keeps us safe.
In order to get past this downright sickening behavior, we have to ask ourselves what would society think about people — if they didn't wear a uniform and a badge — who did this to a woman. Would anyone in their right mind claim that nothing criminal happened if the perpetrators weren't cops?
It is high time Americans and the rest of the world in general realize that just because something is "legal" does not make it moral. If we do not realize that legality does not equal morality, it is inevitable that we will completely implode as a species.
“When misguided public opinion honors what is despicable and despises what is honorable, punishes virtue and rewards vice, encourages what is harmful and discourages what is useful, applauds falsehood and smothers truth under indifference or insult, a nation turns it's back on progress and can be restored only by the terrible lessons of catastrophe.”
― Frédéric Bastiat, Economic Harmonies